Bolivia’s National Hydrocarbons Agency (ANH) has authorized the construction of four new Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) service stations in La Paz, Bolivia’s third most populated city. The Technical Director of the regulator, Norton Tórrez, issued a call for installing natural gas dispensers on 1 May this year, of which the new stations are just four of 26 to be spread across different geographical areas of La Paz city.
Six more stations are expected to be approved by end of July, bringing the total for La Paz to 16. A further 16 are to be added to satisfy the demand for natural gas for those vehicles converted to this fuel.
Bolivia’s government this month issued Supreme Decree No. 2049 which amends decree 27956 to simplify the requirements for investment in CNG stations. With the standard, the investor no longer requires approval from survey maps, location or the land or architecture by municipal governments, but must submit an environmental license before commencement of work. Furthermore, the land size requirement has been reduced from 700 to 500 square metres.
“There is a policy of massification of natural gas. As a body of regulation we have reached agreement with the Ministry of Hydrocarbons and designed this decree to popularize CNG stations in the city of La Paz. Currently there are only six stations for more than 60 thousand vehicles to fill with natural gas, hence the queues,” said Tórrez.
According to Torrez, capital investment for installing a CNG station varies between USD 400 thousand and USD 500 thousand, including the cost of equipment and infrastructure.
In the case of El Alto, the city adjacent La Paz, the ANH official explained it is the region with third highest number of CNG stations in the nation and there are plans to open three more. to national level; addition, plans to open this month’s three suppliers. The country has 233 stations that sell CNG.
(Source: Agencia Nacional de Hidrocarburos)